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HP 4 The Pursuit of Perfection in Antebellum America (Vol.#4)
Transcript of HP 4 The Pursuit of Perfection in Antebellum America (Vol.#4)
The pursuit of perfection in Antebellum America
Trail of Tears
War of 1812
We are all Stories in the End. Be HISTORIC!
A LATE SUPPER PRODUCTION
Prostitution & education reform
Penitentiary Reform & Temperance
The Monroe Doctrine
The New Republic
Era of good feelings
Religion & Reform
in Antebellum America
The Lone Star Republic
Cult of Domesticity & women's rights
The Missouri Compromise of 1820
Marbury vs. Madison
The Second Great Awakening
The Rise of Popular Religion
In France, I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom pursuing courses diametrically opposed to each other; but in America, I found that they were intimately united, and that they reigned in common over the same country… Religion was the foremost of the political institutions of the United States.
Alexis de Tocqueville, 1832
Second Great Awakening Revival Meeting
Charles G. Finney
(1792 – 1895)
The ranges of tents, the fires, reflecting light…; the candles and lamps illuminating the encampment; hundreds moving to and fro…;the preaching, praying, singing, and shouting,… like the sound of many waters, was enough to swallow up all the powers of contemplation.
(The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)
Violence Against Mormons
~ Liberation from
and the cultivation of
the limits of intellect and allow the emotions, the
to create an original relationship with the Universe.
Man must acknowledge a body of moral truths that were intuitive and must
more sensational proof:
~ The infinite benevolence of God.
~ The infinite benevolence of nature.
~ The divinity of man.
They instinctively rejected all secular authority and the authority of organized churches & the Scriptures, of law, or of conventions
~ Therefore, if man was divine, it would be wicked that he should be held
in slavery, or his soul corrupted by superstition, or his mind clouded by ignorance!
~ Thus, the role of the reformer was to restore man to that divinity
which God had endowed them.
The Oneida Community
John Humphrey Noyes (1811-1886)
Millenarianism: the 2nd coming of Christ had already occurred.
Humans were no longer obliged to follow the moral rules of the past.
~ all residents married to each other.
~ carefully regulated
Secular Utopian Communities
Demands of Community Life
~ organizational hierarchy
George Ripley (1802-1880)
Brook Farm, West Roxbury, Massachusetts
Robert Owen (1771-1858)
“Village of Cooperation”
Dorothea Dix (1802-1887)
Dorothea Dix Asylum - 1849
1826 - American Temperance Society “Demon Rum”!
The Beecher Family
Annual Consumption of Alcohol
Religious Training Secular Education
Massachusetts always on the forefront of public educational reform
* 1st state to establish tax support for local public schools.
By 1860 every state offered free public education to whites.
* United States had one of the highest literacy rates.
Horace Mann (1796-1859)
“Father of American Education”
Children were clay in the hands of teachers & school officials
~ children should be
into a state of perfection
~ discouraged corporal punishment
~ established state teacher training programs
The McGuffey Eclectic Readers
Used religious parables to teach “American values
~ Teach middle class morality and respect for order.
~ Teach “3 Rs” + “Protestant ethic” (frugality, hard work, sobriety)”
Troy, New York Female Seminary
~ math, physics, history, geography.
~ train female teachers
She established Mt. Holyoke as the first college for women.
Emma Willard (1787-1870)
Mary Lyons (1797-1849)
A Female Seminary
What It Would Be Like If Ladies Had Their Own Way!
Cult of Domesticity = Slavery
The 2nd Great Awakening inspired women to improve society.
split in the abolitionist movement over women’s role in it.
London: World Anti-Slavery Convention
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
1848: Seneca Falls Declaration of Sentiments
Seneca Falls Declaration
American Colonization Society created
for gradual & voluntary emancipation.
British Colonization Society symbol
Create a free slave state in Liberia, West Africa.
No real anti-slavery sentiment in the North in the 1820s & 1830s.
William Lloyd Garrison
Slavery & Masonry undermined republican values.
~ Immediate emancipation with
~ Slavery was a moral, not an economic issue.
Premiere issue January 1, 1831
The Tree of Slavery—Loaded with the Sum of All Villanies!
Other White Abolitionists
Ran for President
(1840 & 1844)
David Walker (1785-1830)
1829 Appeal to the Coloured Citizens of the World
Fight for freedom rather than wait to be set free by whites.
Frederick Douglass (1817-1895)
The Narrative of the Life Of Frederick Douglass
“The North Star”
The Narrative of Sojourner Truth
Sojourner Truth (1787-1883)
or Isabella Baumfree
Harriet Tubman (1820-1913)
~ Helped over 300 slaves to freedom
~ $40,000 bounty on her head
~ Served as a Union spy during the Civil War
The Underground Railroad
The Underground Railroad
Communes, Utopias, & Experiments
New York, 1848
American Women’s Suffrage Association
Edited Woman’s Journal
“Spiritual Reform From Within”
Leads to Social Reforms & Redefining the Ideal of Equality
Asylum & Penal Reform
Second Great Awakening challenged the traditional beliefs
of the Calvinist faith. This movement inspired other groups to call into question their views on religion & society.
During the Antebellum period in America, many changes came into the picture, not only through religion, but also socially, literary, & artistically.
Hundreds of roving preachers began to spread a variety of gospels on circuit routes, setting up
in rural areas that attracted thousands of new converts.
Reverend Charles G. Finney -
one of the most popular revivalists of the time.
in New England attracted a huge following because of their belief in a loving God, free will, and denial of original sin.
Evangelical Protestant Revivalism
~ Emotional meetings designed to awaken religious faith through
preaching & prayer
~ Lasted days
Circuit Riding Preachers
Baptist & Methodists denominations exploded
~ Methodism became the fastest growing protestant
denomination in the country
Burned Over District
is a nickname given by 20th Century historians to
western & central New York.
It comes from a quote by
, the father of American revivalism, who explained in the 1870’s that the region had seen so many revivals in the previous decades that
it no longer had any more “fuel” (the unconverted) to “burn” (convert).
The “Burned-Over” District
is the predominant religious tradition of the Latter Day Saint movement of Restorationist Christianity.
founded the movement in Western New York in the 1820s.
During the 1830s and 1840s, it distinguished itself from traditional Protestantism.
Book of Mormon
Murdered in Carthage, Illinois
The Mormon “Trek”
Brigham Young (1801-1877)
(The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)
Shaker Simplicity & Utility
Mother Ann Lee (1736-1784)
~ If you will take up your crosses against the works of generations, &
follow Christ in the regeneration, God will cleanse you from all unrighteousness.
~ Remember the cries of those who are in need and trouble, that when you are in
trouble, God may hear your cries.
~ If you improve in one talent, God will give you more.
In Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois
The largest group of
(LDS Church) accepted
as the new prophet/leader and emigrated to what became the Utah Territory
They called themselves the
United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing
, but because of their ecstatic dancing the world called them the
The Shakers were celibate, they did not marry or bear children
, yet theirs is the most enduring religious experiment in American history.
Transcendentalism & Transcendentalist Influences
Literary and intellectual movement
can point the way to truth and direct contact with God
encouraged the liberation of restrictions of the past society
such as religion, social, and family
Philosophical & literary movement that emphasized living simple life based on nature
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Henry David Thoreau
~ Walden (1854)
~ Resistance to Civil Disobedience (1849)
~ The American Scholar (1837)
~ Nature (1832)
~ Self-Reliance (1841)
The Transcendentalist Agenda
~ Give freedom to the slave.
~ Give well-being to the poor and the miserable.
~ Give learning to the ignorant.
~ Give health to the sick.
~ Give peace and justice to society.
A Transcendentalist Critic
Their pursuit of the ideal led to a distorted view of human nature & possibilities:
* The Blithedale Romance
One should accept the world as an imperfect place:
* Scarlet Letter
* House of the Seven Gables
Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)
Original Plans for New Harmony, Indiana
New Harmony in 1832
New Harmony, INdiana
Attempts to create perfect societies
~ Transcendentalist thoughts were taught
~ Farm New Harmony (Indiana) failed Brook Farm (Massachusetts)
The “Shakers” shunned sex (Abstinence is best)
~ Recruited members sustained until the 1940s
First penitentiary founded in Auburn, New York
Pushed for prison reform after visiting a prison and realized that many in prison were mentally ill.
She pushed for mental hospitals
Stress of industrial environment, poor water quality, and cheapness of liquor
~ contributed to an increase in alcohol consumption
was an effort to prohibit the drinking of alcohol
~ Alcohol “Demon RUM,” blamed for
~ Low work productivity, spousal and child abuse
The movement grew out of a desire to protect women & children from abuse
& poverty associated with workingman spending pay on liquor
The movement originally tried to get people to
~ but later changed to pledges of
~ Temperance societies developed
~ Maine became first state to go “dry”
Most temperance groups merged into the
American Temperance Society
Alcohol consumption decreased, but it failed to abolish liquor in the United States
(1835) Advocate of Moral Reform
Female Moral Reform Society:
* focused on the “Johns” & pimps, not the girls.
Prostitution: The “Fallen Woman”
Massachusetts reformed public education
~ Led the Common School Movement
~ Hoped to create good citizens, unite society, & prevent crime & poverty
Horace Mann advocated free public education, better school houses, increase teachers pay, longer terms, and more curriculum (This expanded to other states)
~ created a model we still use today
Noah Webster (American Dictionary) & William McGuffey (Reader) also propose reforms
“Separate Spheres” Concept
Cult of Domesticity
was in the home
(it was a refuge from the cruel world outside).
Her role was to
” her husband andfamily.
An 1830s Massachusett's minister:
The power of woman is her dependence. A woman who gives up that dependence on man to become a reformer yields the power God has given her for her protection, and her character becomes unnatural!
Early 19 Century Women
~ Unable to vote.
~ Legal status of a minor.
(could own her own property.)
(no control over her property or her children.)
~ Could not initiate divorce.
~ Couldn’t make wills, sign a contract, or bring suit in
court without her husband’s permission.
Women of the early 1800s were legally & socially inferior to men.
~ Women could not vote
~ If married, could not own property or retain their earnings
Early 19th century belief that “housework & childcare” were the only proper activities for married women, women were “imprisoned”
In the 1840s, there was little public education
~ Few tax supported schools outside New England
~ Only the wealthy educated their children
~ Many reformers believed that in order for democracy to be effective
an educated population would be needed
Universal suffrage voted for universal education
Women were on the forefront of the Reform Movements such as Temperance & Abolition
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, & the Grimke Sisters became advocates of female equality
Stanton & Mott organized a meeting "to discuss the social, civil, & religious condition & rights of women."
Seneca Falls Convention
( July 19-20, 1848) - Seneca Falls, New York
~ 300 people including 40 men attended
~ Stanton drafted the
"Declaration of Sentiments"
* modeled after the Declaration of Independence
~ called for an end to unequal treatment of women
This marks the beginning of the Women's Rights Movement
Women's Rights Movement
perfect American society
Examples of Utopian communities:
Shakers, Oneida, Brook Farms
, free of sin, men & women equal
Believed mankind suffered due to the lust of Adam & Eve
= the path to perfection)
Way of life=
of labor and leisure while
for the benefit of the greater community
Movement which sought to
~ Renewed interest in the groups began in the 1830s.
Three primary groups emerged:
American Colonization Society (1818)
~ called for emancipation & transportation of freed slaves back to Africa
The American Antislavery Society (1833)
~ led by William Lloyd Garrison (Liberator)
(called for immediate emancipation by any means necessary)
The Liberty Party
~ A moderate group, pledged to end slavery through legal & political means
Leading Escaping Slaves Along the Underground Railroad
leader of the escape
farm wagons transporting
safe houses to rest/sleep
In the 1820s, a 2nd Great Awakening arose in America
~ Emphasised Individual responsibility for seeking salvation
~ Arminianism (Free Will) over Calvinism
It is said that it was a reaction to skepticism, Deism, and rationalism (emphasized reason over religion)
Out of this came a movement, a desire by Christians to do "Good Works" and attack the perceived social ills of America
Religion Sparks Reform
The Age of Reform
Wide ranging groups of people with different interests
~ Profanity, alcohol, tobacco, slavery, etc.
~ Miracle cures, communes, polygamy, celibacy, etc.
~ attacked war, cruelty, discrimination